One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(in an insect) a sclerotized plate forming the tergum of a segment.Compare with sternite
- ‘Unlike centipedes, there are more tergites than segments.’
- ‘Along its axial region is developed a narrow ridge, joining and continuous with similar ridges in the seven thoracic tergites.’
- ‘They are distinguished by prominent keeled tergites, and legs with eight segments and well sclerotised exoskeleton.’
- ‘The dorsal surface of each abdominal segment has a plate of hard cuticle called tergites.’
- ‘These muscles are arranged as a series of parallel muscle fibers from the lateral edge of the dorsal tergite to the ventral sternite.’
Late 19th century: from tergum + -ite.
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